Preveza: The Continental Island
Preveza, Greece | historical, family, walking
For centuries Preveza served as the border between two empires. Romans, Venetians, Ottomans, and Greeks left traces of their presence in the town’s castles, the sacred sites and the coffee shops. Soldiers, poets, governors, generals, and sailors sought wealth and refuge, making Preveza one of the most fascinating corners of Greece.
The Municipality of Preveza is in southern Epirus, between the Ionian Sea and the Ambracian Gulf. The town of Preveza lies near the Gulf’s entrance and is the capital of the regional unit of Preveza.
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The safest port
The port of Preveza was very busy in the 19th century. The Ambracian Gulf offered security, the port was right next to the town, it was protected by strong fortifications and the meticulous adherence to sanitary regulations protected its visitors from disease. A good road network connected Preveza to the important agricultural and industrial centers of Thessaly and Epirus. The local economy benefited from imports and exports. The people of Preveza could order clothing and appliances straight from Paris, while the seaside was packed with coffee-shops and pastry shops. The local movie theater attracted large crowds.
The Devil’s Bazar
It is said that during the Ottoman period the Christian residents of Preveza used to cover the alleyway near the town market with soap to have a laugh at the expense of the unfortunate Turkish soldiers who slipped and fell down. One day the Ottoman commander rode past but his horse lost its footing and the commander fell off. The surprised victim exclaimed “Seytan Bazaar!” The marble slab on the alley’s east entrance was made by the Swedish sculptor Torgny Larsson on the order of the local director Babis Tsokas. The artist was inspired by the local store owners (the butcher, the barber etc) and residents whom he included in his work.
KOSTAS KARYOTAKIS' STATUE
Greece in crisis
Kostas Karyotakis was born in Tripolis in 1896. His childhood was defined by national drama. For a whole decade (1912-1922) Greece was at war. The triumphs of the Balkan Wars and the First World War were marred by the National Schism, the Smyrna catastrophe in 1922 and the population exchange that followed. The ‘20s generation faced enormous political, social, and ideological problems (the end of the “Grand Idealism,” the struggle to absorb the refugees, dictatorship, unemployment). Their response was to seek refuge in social revolution.